Advanced Touches - Week 14
In PFF’s five years of data, the only player to come close to Adrian Peterson’s 3.94 yards after contact on 200 or more carries was DeAngelo Williams in 2008 (3.90). The catalyst for that improvement may be a stark shift in his instincts behind the line. AP averaged 1.6 VYA in 2011 behind PFF’s No.1 rated offensive line. (To put that in context, Jamaal Charles averaged 3.3 yards before contact in 2010.) This year Peterson’s up to 2.1. Although some of it is purely definitional, averaging 2.0 or more yards before contact seems to be a significant threshold for consistently breaking long runs. Peterson’s Elusive Rating has jumped from his solid 2008-2011 average in the mid-30s to an almost unfathomable 53.6 this year.
With AP often falling into the third round of 2012 fantasy drafts, he’s become the fulcrum for most of the fantasy titles that will be decided over the next two weeks. If Ayn Rand were writing today, Peterson might be the one shrugging. The eyes of the entire fantasy universe will be on Purple Jesus when he takes the field in St. Louis this weekend.